The Howard Government and Political Management: The Challenge of Policy Activism

Jenny Stewart, Maria Maley

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    12 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Although the distinctive values promulgated by successive Howard governments have been extensively analysed, less attention has been paid to the manner of their incorporation into policy. This article maps the ways in which policy processes were managed to achieve values-change in the Howard decade (1996–2006), focusing on the policy subsystem at the apex of government. Three case studies are investigated in detail: the development of welfare to work policies; strategies to combat illicit drugs; and industrial relations legislation. We show how Prime Minister Howard's leadership was built around a highly personalised system of political control, based on the seizing of opportunities as they arose; the engineering of policy networks; and the alignment of key resources such as the Cabinet Office; the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, and senior bureaucratic leadership with the Prime Minister's policy priorities. We show that this system made possible very rapid policy development, but was also associated with deficits in policy-related research and with a degree of implementation risk whereby minimal consultation had occurred. Some comparisons are drawn with governments of the Hawke–Keating period, which were more technocratic in approach
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)277-293
    Number of pages17
    JournalAustralian Journal of Political Science
    Volume42
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2007

    Fingerprint

    minister
    management
    leadership
    value change
    political control
    industrial relations
    subsystem
    development policy
    deficit
    welfare
    legislation
    engineering
    drug
    resources
    Values

    Cite this

    @article{38cf4a51394f4cb0bceaa725130e6d83,
    title = "The Howard Government and Political Management: The Challenge of Policy Activism",
    abstract = "Although the distinctive values promulgated by successive Howard governments have been extensively analysed, less attention has been paid to the manner of their incorporation into policy. This article maps the ways in which policy processes were managed to achieve values-change in the Howard decade (1996–2006), focusing on the policy subsystem at the apex of government. Three case studies are investigated in detail: the development of welfare to work policies; strategies to combat illicit drugs; and industrial relations legislation. We show how Prime Minister Howard's leadership was built around a highly personalised system of political control, based on the seizing of opportunities as they arose; the engineering of policy networks; and the alignment of key resources such as the Cabinet Office; the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, and senior bureaucratic leadership with the Prime Minister's policy priorities. We show that this system made possible very rapid policy development, but was also associated with deficits in policy-related research and with a degree of implementation risk whereby minimal consultation had occurred. Some comparisons are drawn with governments of the Hawke–Keating period, which were more technocratic in approach",
    author = "Jenny Stewart and Maria Maley",
    year = "2007",
    doi = "10.1080/10361140701320026",
    language = "English",
    volume = "42",
    pages = "277--293",
    journal = "Australian Journal of Political Science",
    issn = "1036-1146",
    publisher = "Routledge",
    number = "2",

    }

    The Howard Government and Political Management: The Challenge of Policy Activism. / Stewart, Jenny; Maley, Maria.

    In: Australian Journal of Political Science, Vol. 42, No. 2, 2007, p. 277-293.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    TY - JOUR

    T1 - The Howard Government and Political Management: The Challenge of Policy Activism

    AU - Stewart, Jenny

    AU - Maley, Maria

    PY - 2007

    Y1 - 2007

    N2 - Although the distinctive values promulgated by successive Howard governments have been extensively analysed, less attention has been paid to the manner of their incorporation into policy. This article maps the ways in which policy processes were managed to achieve values-change in the Howard decade (1996–2006), focusing on the policy subsystem at the apex of government. Three case studies are investigated in detail: the development of welfare to work policies; strategies to combat illicit drugs; and industrial relations legislation. We show how Prime Minister Howard's leadership was built around a highly personalised system of political control, based on the seizing of opportunities as they arose; the engineering of policy networks; and the alignment of key resources such as the Cabinet Office; the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, and senior bureaucratic leadership with the Prime Minister's policy priorities. We show that this system made possible very rapid policy development, but was also associated with deficits in policy-related research and with a degree of implementation risk whereby minimal consultation had occurred. Some comparisons are drawn with governments of the Hawke–Keating period, which were more technocratic in approach

    AB - Although the distinctive values promulgated by successive Howard governments have been extensively analysed, less attention has been paid to the manner of their incorporation into policy. This article maps the ways in which policy processes were managed to achieve values-change in the Howard decade (1996–2006), focusing on the policy subsystem at the apex of government. Three case studies are investigated in detail: the development of welfare to work policies; strategies to combat illicit drugs; and industrial relations legislation. We show how Prime Minister Howard's leadership was built around a highly personalised system of political control, based on the seizing of opportunities as they arose; the engineering of policy networks; and the alignment of key resources such as the Cabinet Office; the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, and senior bureaucratic leadership with the Prime Minister's policy priorities. We show that this system made possible very rapid policy development, but was also associated with deficits in policy-related research and with a degree of implementation risk whereby minimal consultation had occurred. Some comparisons are drawn with governments of the Hawke–Keating period, which were more technocratic in approach

    U2 - 10.1080/10361140701320026

    DO - 10.1080/10361140701320026

    M3 - Article

    VL - 42

    SP - 277

    EP - 293

    JO - Australian Journal of Political Science

    JF - Australian Journal of Political Science

    SN - 1036-1146

    IS - 2

    ER -